Formula 1 tyre supplier Pirelli has announced it will create seven dry-weather tyre compounds for the 2018 season as it takes a more aggressive approach with the construction and design of its tyres next year.
Pirelli adopted a cautious approach to its 2017 compound selections and designs following the sport’s shift to wider tyres and the sport’s move to design regulations that created the fastest cars in its history.
Under the 2017 regulations, each driver was allowed to select from a mix of three available tyre compounds for each Grand Prix. Overwhelmingly throughout the season, most drivers opted to stock heavily on the softest available tyre compound which served to underline Pirelli’s subsequent decision to take a more aggressive approach in 2018.
The company has therefore introduced two new compounds at opposite ends of the spectrum: the pink-banded Hyper Soft tyre and an orange-banded Super Hard compound – the latter has been declared an ‘insurance policy’. These will operate in addition to the existing Ultra Soft, Super Soft, Soft, Medium and rarely-used Hard compounds in existence.
The Hyper Soft tyre name was selected following an online poll, where 62 per cent of fans voted for that name among a shortlist.
While not expected to be used in 2018, the Super Hard construction has been dubbed an ‘insurance policy’ compound by Pirelli. With the Super Hard tyre taking the orange band identifier, the Hard tyre will switch to an ‘ice blue’ livery – the remaining compounds will be unchanged in their colour schemes.
The Formula 1 teams will test the revised tyre range at the Yas Marina Circuit following Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
The Hyper Soft was selected as the name for the new softest compound following an online poll, receiving a 62 per cent share of the vote.
The Super Hard has been introduced as an ‘insurance policy’, with all slick compounds to feature fresh constructions and working ranges, as Pirelli shifts towards a more aggressive stance than 2017.
With the Super Hard taking on an orange colour, the Hard tyre will shift to an ‘ice blue’, with the remaining compounds unchanged with regards to livery.
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